I was thinking about my Dad today, and my Mother-in-Law, and then I saw this story, and this one, and understood; because, in a small way, I’ve experienced care giving with my Mom and my Father-in-Law. But I was never the caregiver to the extent that my Dad and M-I-L had to be. And I can’t hold a candle to their light. Thanks Dad, for taking care of Mom; and Mom, for taking care of Dad. Thank you both for showing me the way, even though I hope and pray the day never comes when I have to walk that path.
Well, it’s obvious I started this post on Monday, strongly motivated by those two news stories. Today’s a new day, but caregiving is never really out of my mind, just tucked back into the recesses of the brain for a while.
I had a nice chat with a friend during the break at Jazz at the Zoo last night. He’s writing his third book and getting ready to tackle the publishing end of the business. A retired teacher and school principal, he’s taking extra care to make sure that all three books are “just right” before he submits them. He said it wouldn’t be right for someone approaching his seventieth birthday to be submitting books to a publisher that weren’t very competently edited and representative of his best work. Writing and publishing makes a statement about who he is, not just what he does. I wonder how many people look at their work the same way as he does.
The evidence splashed across our computer and TV screens, public signs, and printed stories would suggest otherwise. The number of misspellings and grammar errors appearing in published work these days is positively depressing and highly annoying. I guess I shouldn’t let myself be troubled by the garbage that passes the editor’s eyes but it really bothers me. Hey, I’m not perfect; I wasn’t one of those “A” students in high school English class, well not always anyway. I’m sure you’ll find grammar and spelling errors on my blog but I’ll guarantee it’s not for lack of knowledge or editorial effort to make it right before publishing my posts. I will promise to not put an apostrophe before every single s at the end of a word, only where it represents possessive or a contraction, NOT A PLURAL for Heaven’s sake! That is my biggest pet peeve in contemporary writing, but there are plenty of others; just don’t get me started!
Speaking of writing, today I saw a piece by Seth Godin, “Different or Remarkable”, on creating a remarkable product. Marketers are always talking about how you differentiate your product from the competition in the marketplace, particularly when there are many similar products from which to choose. He points out that maybe it would be better to create a truly unique and remarkable product, one that earns remarks or comments from its fans rather than trying to differentiate a product that can barely be distinguished from its competitors. In the writing world that translates to books sold and read, blogs read and commented on, business ideas that catch fire, web sites that draw big crowds and I’m sure there are many other examples out there.
What about you and the things that make you unique? Do your work and your life pass that test? Do you love what you do? Is what you do becoming a part of who you are? Are you the craftsman of your life? Is what you do and how you live appreciated by those who benefit from your work and your life? Do others remark about and comment on your example in a positive way? Are you making a difference and not just differentiating yourself? Are you living your remarkable life?
Living is a challenge, making a difference is a real calling; using your God given gifts, talents and passions to make that difference is what we’re all called to do and how we’re challenged to live.
Trying my best to write remarkable insights and answer the call…